×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Apple Baking New Ad-Skipping TV Service

Report: Tech giant talked to TV firms about paying them for passed-over spots

Apple may be ready to revolutionize the TV business after all.

Following years of rumors of all sorts of newfangled products supposedly in development to take over the living rooms, there’s fresh scuttlebutt that Apple is in discussions to create a service that would allow viewers to engage in ad-skipping. The initial report comes courtesy of former Wall Street Journal reporter Jessica Lessin.

And here’s the grabber: Apple would supposedly pay the TV networks for the ad revenue they missed out on due to to the skipped commercials.

The particulars are few and far in between, but Apple CEO Tim Cook and senior veep Eddy Cue apparently made the rounds at the Allen & Co. conference in Sun Valley last week talking up the new technology to various entities in the TV business. How much consumers would pay for such a product is unknown.

Such a new technology would put a fresh spin on DVR, which has been a sore spot in the TV industry for the past decade. Few companies besides Apple would have pockets deep enough to compensate an entire industry for lost ad dollars.

While TV networks might not mind Apple chipping in to cover the cost of skipped ads, that’s a product that may not sit well with those on Madison Avenue who need the medium to promote their products to the tune of about $70 billion per year.

Where exactly this fits into Apple’s amorphous plans in the TV space is entirely unclear. While Cook has clearly established that cracking the TV market is a more pressing priority than it was for predecessor Steve Jobs, just what shape that invasion could take is anybody’s guess (and plenty of analysts do just that). The new ad-skipping technology could be part of some yet-to-be-revealed set-top box or screen Apple has yet to reveal to the marketplace.

If the new service is meant to be introduced in the shorter term, then it’s likely to find a home on Apple TV, the set-top device that has been a moderate success for Apple, which is more accustomed to wholesale domination of the categories in which it brings products, from iPhone to iPad. Apple TV seems to have emerged as more of a priority in recent weeks, given news that Time Warner Cable may be the first authentication service to find a home on the device, and the hire of key Hulu exec Pete Distad.

More TV

  • Mike Royce24th Annual Critics' Choice Awards,

    CBS Orders Comedy Pilot 'Story of Us' From 'One Day at a Time' Co-Creator Mike Royce

    CBS has ordered a pilot for the comedy “The Story of Us” from writer and executive producer Mike Royce. The hybrid comedy tells the story of how an unlikely couple becomes a family through interviews and vignettes spanning 10 years. In addition to Royce, Nick Stoller and Conor Welch will serve as executive producers. Sony [...]

  • 'Schitt's Creek' Stars Reveal Dream Guest

    'Schitt's Creek' Cast Reveals Dream Guest Stars: Oprah, Beyonce and ...

    “Schitt’s Creek” has big dreams. Dan Levy, who stars as David on the series, says his wish list of guest stars includes Oprah, Beyonce, Mariah Carey and Gwyneth Paltrow. “All for different reasons, none of whom we’ll get,” he cracked at the Critics’ Choice Awards. For those who haven’t caught on to the “Schitt’s Creek” [...]

  • Bob Costas Olympics Mike Tirico

    Bob Costas Officially Out at NBC After Nearly 40 Years

    Bob Costas has formally parted ways with NBC after nearly 40 years as a sportscaster for the Peacock. Costas and NBC have been negotiating an exit agreement for months. Word surfaced last summer that he was preparing to end his tenure with the network. Costas confirmed the news in an interview with the New York [...]

  • Happy

    TV Roundup: Syfy Drops First Trailer for Season 2 of 'Happy!'

    In today’s TV News Roundup, Syfy drops the first trailer for the second season of “Happy!” and Imagine Kids & Family sets a partnership with Four M Studios.  FIRST LOOKS Syfy has dropped the first trailer for season two of “Happy!” starring Christopher Meloni and Patton Oswalt. The new season premieres Wednesday, March 27 at 10/9c [...]

  • 'Brexit' Review: Benedict Cumberbatch Stars in

    TV Review: HBO's 'Brexit'

    The announcement of the film “Brexit” — which aired in the U.K. on Channel 4 before its HBO bow on Jan. 19 — engendered serious criticism from the British, and understandably so. The film, which looks at recent history in the manner HBO productions like “Game Change” and “Recount” had done, takes on a story whose very [...]

  • 'Fyre Fraud' and 'Fyre' Reviews: Behind

    TV Review: 'Fyre Fraud' and 'Fyre'

    It seems in retrospect unavoidable that the week of release for a highly-anticipated documentary about a scammer began with an attention-grabbing stunt. On Monday, in advance of the planned Friday drop of Netflix’s “Fyre,” Hulu executed a surprise release of its own “Fyre Fraud”; both films assay the failed 2017 gathering Fyre Festival, a would-be [...]

  • Deadly Class Review

    TV Review: 'Deadly Class' on SyFy

    High school, according to TV and movies, is either the best or worst thing that can happen to a person. It’s almost always depicted as the most fun a kid can have, or a horrifying hellhole from which there’s no escape. “Deadly Class” is decidedly in the latter camp — and despite its edgy attempts [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content